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October 24, 2014

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Official: Rivera plane plummeted almost straight

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Julie Jacobson / AP

Jenni Rivera performs “Ya Lo Se” onstage at the 11th Annual Latin Grammy Awards on Thursday, Nov. 11, 2010, in Las Vegas.

Jenni Rivera Dies at 43

Fan Jenny Guerrero pays tribute to singer Jenni Rivera at a makeshift memorial in front of an image of the Virgin of Guadalupe at the Plaza Mexico shopping center in Lynwood, Calif., early Monday, Dec. 10, 2012. Launch slideshow »

MEXICO CITY — Mexico's top transportation official says a plane carrying Mexican-American music superstar Jenni Rivera plunged almost vertically from more than 28,000 feet and hit the ground in a nose-dive at more than 600 miles an hour.

Gerardo Ruiz Esparza, Mexico's secretary of communications and transportation, offered the first detailed accounts of the moments leading up to the crash that killed Rivera and six other people aboard the Learjet on Sunday.

Ruiz told Radio Formula that the plane hit the ground 1.2 miles from where it began falling, meaning it plummeted at a nearly 45 degree angle.

He says: "The plane practically nose-dived. The impact must have been terrible."

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